[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 61 (Monday, March 31, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 18073-18083]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-07132]



[[Page 18073]]

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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket Nos. 50-277 and 50-278; NRC-2013-0232]


Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station, Units 2 and 3

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact; 
issuance.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering 
issuance of amendments to Renewed Facility Operating License Nos. DPR-
44 and DPR-56, issued to Exelon Generation Company, LLC (Exelon, the 
licensee), for operation of the Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station 
(PBAPS), Units 2 and 3, located in York and Lancaster Counties, 
Pennsylvania. The proposed amendments would authorize an increase in 
the maximum reactor power level from 3514 megawatts thermal (MWt) to 
3951 MWt. The NRC staff is issuing a final Environmental Assessment 
(EA) and final Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) associated with 
the proposed license amendments.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2013-0232 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may access publicly-available information related to this document 
using any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2013-0232. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-287-
3422; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact 
the individual(s) listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section 
of this document.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may access publicly available documents online in the NRC 
Library at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the 
search, select ``ADAMS Public Documents'' and then select ``Begin Web-
based ADAMS Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's 
Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-
4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. The ADAMS accession number 
for each document referenced in this document (if that document is 
available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that a document is 
referenced. The application for amendments is dated September 28, 2012, 
and is supplemented by letters dated February 15, 2013, May 7, 2013, 
May 24, 2013, June 4, 2013, June 27, 2013, July 30, 2013, July 31, 
2013, August 5, 2013, August 22, 2013, August 29, 2013, September 13, 
2013, October 11, 2013, October 15, 2013, October 31, 2013, December 6, 
2013, December 20, 2013, January 17, 2014, January 31, 2014 (two 
letters), February 20, 2014, February 28, 2014, March 10, 2014, and 
March 17, 2014 (ADAMS Accession Nos. ML122860201, ML13051A032, 
ML13129A143, ML13149A145, ML13156A368, ML13182A025, ML13211A457, 
ML13213A285, ML13217A431, ML13240A002, ML13241A418, ML13260A076, 
ML13289A191, ML13289A300, ML13308A331, ML13345A687, ML13358A083, 
ML14023A659, ML14031A422, ML14035A158, ML14051A629, ML14070A141, 
ML14072A016, and ML14076A082, respectively). The application and some 
of the supplements contain Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards 
Information (proprietary information) and, accordingly, the proprietary 
information has been withheld from public disclosure. Redacted versions 
of the documents containing proprietary information have been made 
publicly available and can be accessed via the applicable ADAMS 
accession numbers listed above.
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard B. Ennis, Office of Nuclear 
Reactor Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington DC 
20555-001, telephone: 301-415-1420, email: Rick.Ennis@nrc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Introduction

    In accordance with Sec.  50.92 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations (10 CFR), the NRC is considering issuance of amendments to 
Renewed Facility Operating License Nos. DPR-44 and DPR-56, issued to 
Exelon, for operation of PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, located in York and 
Lancaster Counties, Pennsylvania. The proposed amendments would 
increase the maximum licensed thermal power level, for each reactor, 
from 3,514 MWt to 3,951 MWt. This change, referred to as an extended 
power uprate (EPU), represents an increase of approximately 12.4 
percent above the current licensed thermal power level.
    Consistent with the NRC guidance for this type of license 
amendment, RS-001, ``Review Standard for Extended Power Uprates,'' 
dated December 2003 (ADAMS Accession No. ML033640024), the NRC staff 
prepared a draft EA and a draft FONSI. The draft EA and draft FONSI 
were published in the Federal Register on October 24, 2013 (78 FR 
63506) with a 30-day period for public comment.
    Two sets of comments were received by the NRC staff in response to 
the Federal Register notice dated October 24, 2013. The NRC staff has 
reviewed and resolved the comments as discussed below. Based on 
resolution of the comments, the NRC staff has prepared a final EA and a 
final FONSI for publication in the Federal Register, as shown below, 
pursuant to the requirements in 10 CFR 51.21, 10 CFR 51.32, and 10 CFR 
51.35.
    In response to the Federal Register notice dated October 24, 2013, 
comments were submitted by: (1) Exelon, in a letter dated November 22, 
2013 (ADAMS Accession No. ML13339A807); and (2) the Pennsylvania 
Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP), in a letter dated 
November 22, 2013 (ADAMS Accession No. ML13343A150).
    Exelon's letter dated November 22, 2013, provided suggested wording 
changes to clarify the draft EA. The NRC staff incorporated each of 
these comments into the final EA using the words proposed in Exelon's 
letter.
    PADEP's letter dated November 22, 2013, stated, in part, that 
``PADEP does not have specific detailed comments at this time because 
Exelon just recently submitted a water quality certification request 
for this project. Under the Clean Water Act, water quality 
certification is required prior to the issuance of the license 
amendment. Pennsylvania has detailed regulations concerning water 
quality certification and it would be premature to comment on this 
project prior to having an opportunity to review the environmental 
assessment required by those regulations.'' On January 28, 2014, the 
NRC staff held a conference call with the PADEP staff to discuss 
PADEP's letter. The NRC confirmed that PADEP has no comments on the 
draft EA and draft FONSI and that it has no objections to the NRC staff 
issuing a final EA and final FONSI.
    Based on the results of the EA that follows, the NRC has determined 
not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the proposed 
amendments, and is issuing a final FONSI.

[[Page 18074]]

II. Environmental Assessment

Plant Site and Environs

    PBAPS consists of Units 1, 2, and 3 located on approximately 620 
acres of land in Peach Bottom Township, York County, Pennsylvania on 
the west bank of the Susquehanna River. The site is approximately 38 
miles north of Baltimore, Maryland; 19 miles southwest of Lancaster, 
Pennsylvania; and 30 miles southeast of York, Pennsylvania. The area 
within 6 miles of the site includes parts of York and Lancaster 
Counties in Pennsylvania and parts of Harford and Cecil Counties in 
Maryland. The property around the site is predominantly rural, 
characterized by farmland and woods.
    Units 2 and 3 are General Electric Type 4, Mark I boiling-water 
reactors. In addition to Units 2 and 3, the site contains turbine 
buildings, intake and discharge canals, auxiliary buildings, 
switchyards, an interim spent fuel storage installation, a training 
center, a public boat ramp, a picnic area, and the retired Unit 1 
reactor. Unit 1 is located adjacent to Units 2 and 3. It was a 
prototype, high-temperature, gas-cooled reactor which operated from 
1966 to 1974. Unit 1 is permanently shut down, defueled, and is 
maintained in a safe storage, surveillance, security, and maintenance 
condition. It is not part of this application and will be 
decommissioned in the future.
    Units 2 and 3 at PBAPS have a common once-through heat dissipation 
system that draws water from and discharges to the Conowingo Pond. The 
Conowingo Pond is a reservoir on the Susquehanna River formed by the 
Conowingo Dam (located approximately 8.5 miles downstream of the PBAPS 
site) and the Holtwood Dam (located approximately 6 miles upstream of 
the PBAPS site). The Conowingo and Holtwood Dams each provide 
hydroelectric generation.
    The Conowingo Pond has a surface area of approximately 9,000 acres 
with 35 miles of shoreline. It has a width that varies from 0.5 to 1.3 
miles and a maximum depth of 98 feet (ft). In addition to providing 
cooling water for PBAPS, Conowingo Pond is used as a fish and wildlife 
resource, for recreation, and as a source of public water.
    Units 2 and 3 use six circulating water pumps (three per unit), 
each rated at 250,000 gallons per minute (gpm), which draw water from 
Conowingo Pond at a rate of 1.5 million gpm when all six pumps are 
running. Water drawn from Conowingo Pond passes through a series of 
intake structures before it is circulated through two main condensers. 
From these condensers, water passes through a series of discharge 
structures and then flows to Conowingo Pond where the heat is 
dissipated to the environment. Exelon also maintains three mechanical 
draft helper cooling towers that have the capacity to handle 
approximately 60 percent of the cooling water circulating through Units 
2 and 3. Water drawn from Conowingo Pond flows into a 487 ft long outer 
intake structure along the west bank of Conowingo Pond. Trash racks 
protect 32 outer intake openings and prevent large floating debris and 
ice floes from reaching 24 traveling screens. This cooling water intake 
structure is designed to reduce impingement by preventing fish and 
small debris from entering the system. The intake structure allows fish 
to avoid the screens by having a low approach velocity. The screens are 
made of 3/8-inch square mesh and are placed approximately 40 ft. behind 
the outer trash racks in the outer intake structure. From the outer 
intake structure, water enters two, 700 ft-long and 200 ft-wide, intake 
basins. The cooling water for the condensers is drawn from these two 
intake basins.
    Cooling water discharges from the condensers into a 700 ft-long and 
400 ft-wide discharge basin where the heated cooling water then flows 
through a 4,700 ft-long discharge canal. Three discharge gates at the 
end of the discharge canal control the flow to Conowingo Pond and 
maintain a discharge velocity between 5 and 8 ft/second.

Description of the Proposed Action

    The proposed action is the issuance of amendments to the licenses 
for PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, which would increase the maximum licensed 
thermal power level, for each reactor, from 3,514 MWt to 3,951 MWt. 
This change, referred to as an extended power uprate (EPU), represents 
an increase of approximately 12.4 percent above the current licensed 
thermal power level. This change is considered an EPU by the NRC 
because it exceeds the typical 7 percent power increase that can be 
accommodated with only minor plant changes. An EPU usually requires 
significant modifications to major plant equipment. The proposed EPU 
for PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, will require significant modifications as 
discussed in Attachment 9 to the licensee's application dated September 
28, 2012 (ADAMS Accession No. ML12286A011).
    If approved, these amendments would allow the heat output of each 
reactor to increase, which would increase the flow of steam to the 
turbines. This would increase the production of electricity, increase 
the amount of waste heat delivered to the condensers, and slightly 
raise the temperature of the water discharged into Conowingo Pond.
    Plant modifications to implement the EPU are expected to occur 
during normal refueling outages that occur for each reactor once every 
24 months and typically last for 30 to 40 days. If the EPU is approved, 
Units 2 and 3 are expected to begin operating at the EPU core power 
level of 3,951 MWt in 2014 and 2015, respectively.

Need for the Proposed Action

    The current licenses for PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, contain a maximum 
authorized thermal power level for each reactor. The licensee desires 
to increase this power level in order to increase the electrical output 
of the plant without the need to site and construct new facilities. To 
allow this to occur, the NRC must amend the licenses for each unit to 
authorize the proposed new maximum thermal power level.

Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Action

    At the time of issuance of the operating license for PBAPS, Units 2 
and 3, the NRC staff noted that any activity authorized by the license 
would be encompassed by the overall action evaluated in the Final 
Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the operation of the PBAPS 
reactors. This FEIS was issued in 1973, by the U.S. Atomic Energy 
Commission (predecessor agency to the NRC). The NRC revisited and 
updated the FEIS in January 2003, when the NRC published Supplement 10 
to NUREG-1437, ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement for License 
Renewal of Nuclear Power Plants,'' that addressed the license renewal 
of PBAPS, Units 2 and 3 (ADAMS Accession No. ML030270059).
    The radiological and non-radiological impacts on the environment 
that may result from the proposed EPU are summarized below.

Non-Radiological Impacts

Land Use and Aesthetic Impacts

    Potential land use and aesthetic impacts for the proposed action 
include impacts from construction and plant modifications. All plant 
modifications will be implemented within existing buildings. No new 
permanent expansion of buildings, roads, parking lots, equipment 
storage areas, or transmission facilities on site will be required to 
either complete the proposed EPU modifications or operate

[[Page 18075]]

PBAPS at EPU conditions. Exelon will use existing parking lots, road 
access, equipment lay-down areas, offices, workshops, warehouses, and 
restrooms during plant modifications. Therefore, land use conditions 
and visual aesthetics would not change significantly at PBAPS from EPU 
plant modifications. The EPU plant modifications are discussed in 
Attachment 9 to the licensee's application dated September 28, 2012 
(ADAMS Accession No. ML12286A011).
    The plant cooling towers are not ``routinely used'' (see ``Aquatic 
Resource Impacts'') and are not planned to be ``routinely used'' during 
and after implementation of the EPU. Therefore, consistent with the 
discussion in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 2.2.8.4, ``Visual 
Aesthetics and Noise,'' there should not be any significant impacts 
from the EPU, such as icing, fogging, plume, or noise impacts from the 
operation of cooling towers. No significant impacts should occur to 
land use and aesthetic resources in the vicinity of PBAPS from EPU 
plant modifications.

Non-Radioactive Waste Impacts

    As described in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 2.1.5, 
``Nonradioactive Waste Systems,'' the principal non-radioactive 
effluents from PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, consists of hazardous (chemical) 
wastes, lubrication oil wastes, and sanitary wastes. The PBAPS site is 
a small quantity generator of hazardous waste. Lubrication oils are 
normally injected into the auxiliary boiler fuel feed with a small 
quantity sent offsite for disposal. Spent batteries and discarded 
fluorescent lights are recycled. Sanitary waste is sent to the onsite 
sewage treatment plant. Implementation of the EPU will likely result in 
a short-term temporary increase in construction related solid waste and 
sanitary waste. The proposed EPU is not expected to cause a significant 
impact from the generation of nonradioactive waste.

Air Quality Impacts

    Major air pollution emission sources at the PBAPS site are 
regulated by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection 
(PADEP). Nonradioactive emission sources at PBAPS result primarily from 
diesel generators that are routinely tested and used when needed to 
supply backup power. The other major source is from boilers used for 
space heating and to help with unit startups. Emissions from these 
sources are regulated by Pennsylvania's Permit Operating Program State 
Only Permit number 67-05020. There will be no changes to the emissions 
from these sources as a result of the EPU. However, some minor and 
short duration air quality impacts would occur during implementation of 
the EPU. The main source of air emissions would come from the vehicles 
driven by outage workers needed to implement the EPU. This source will 
be short-term and temporary. Therefore, the proposed EPU is not 
expected to cause a significant impact on air quality.

Water Use Impacts

    The facility is authorized by the Susquehanna River Basin 
Commission to draw up to 2,363.62 million gallons/day of water from 
Conowingo Pond and to consume up to 49 million gallons/day. Consumptive 
water use at PBAPS consists of two key components: Evaporation and 
drift in the helper cooling towers when the towers are in operation; 
and in-stream evaporation from Conowingo Pond due to the additional 
thermal loading from the plant. The PADEP National Pollutant Discharge 
Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued to PBAPS (PA 0009733) requires 
that cooling towers must be available to prevent unwanted discharges of 
high-temperature water. If the three helper cooling towers are 
operated, water would be lost by evaporation at an approximate rate 5.5 
to 22 ft\3\/sec. This evaporative loss represents less than 2 percent 
of the minimum monthly average river flow. Once the EPU has been 
implemented, water consumption for plant cooling will not significantly 
change from pre-EPU operation.
    The PBAPS site also uses Conowingo Pond as a source of potable 
water for the PBAPS site. During the planned outages and modifications, 
the consumption of potable water will increase to support the temporary 
workforce. After the EPU has been implemented, there should not be any 
significant increase in the consumption of potable water. Since 
groundwater is not used as a source of water, there should not be any 
consumptive use of groundwater as a result of the EPU.
    The proposed EPU would not significantly increase water 
consumption. Therefore, the proposed EPU is not expected to cause a 
significant impact on water use.

Water Quality Impacts

    Since plant modifications will take place inside of existing 
buildings, construction activities should not result in groundwater or 
surface water pollution. The intake of water from Conowingo Pond for 
cooling will not increase as a result of the proposed EPU. Therefore, 
the discharge rates to Conowingo Pond should not increase. In turn, 
there should not be any changes to Conowingo Pond from increased 
turbidity, scouring, erosion, or sedimentation as a result of cooling 
water discharge. All plant wastewaters are managed in accordance with 
the NPDES permit issued by the PADEP. Plant wastewaters include 
discharges from the water treatment wastewater settling basin, 
auxiliary boiler blowdown, dredging/rehandling basin, and sewage 
treatment plant. The volume of discharge from the sewage treatment 
plant may temporarily increase during construction, but will remain 
within permitted levels. Implementation of the proposed EPU will not 
alter the quality or quantity of plant waste water discharges. The 
proposed EPU would not increase the impacts to Conowingo Pond water 
quality. Therefore, the proposed EPU is not expected to cause a 
significant impact to water quality.

Aquatic Resource Impacts

    The potential impacts to aquatic resources from the proposed action 
could include impingement of aquatic life on barrier nets, trash racks, 
and traveling screens; entrainment of aquatic life through the cooling 
water intake structures and into the cooling water systems; and effects 
from the discharge of chemicals and heated water. However, the proposed 
EPU would not affect aquatic resources in a manner or to a degree that 
exceeds the analysis of effects in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10.
    The NRC staff concluded in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 
4.1.3, ``Impingement of Fish and Shellfish,'' that, during the 
continued operation of PBAPS, the potential impacts caused by the 
impingement of fish and shellfish on the debris screens of the cooling 
water intake system would be small (i.e., not detectable or so minor 
that they will neither destabilize nor noticeably alter any important 
attribute of the resource) and that impingement losses would not be 
great enough to adversely affect Susquehanna River aquatic populations. 
The NRC staff also concluded in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 
4.1.3, that, in the early life stages in the cooling water system, the 
potential impacts of entrainment of fish and shellfish would be small, 
and that there are no demonstrated, significant effects to the aquatic 
environment related to entrainment. Regarding the potential impacts of 
thermal discharges, in NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 4.1.4, ``Heat 
Shock,'' the NRC staff concluded that the impacts are small and that 
the heated water discharged to Conowingo Pond does not change the

[[Page 18076]]

temperature enough to adversely impact balanced, indigenous populations 
of fish and wildlife. Additionally, the NRC has generically determined 
that the effects from discharge of chlorine or other biocides, as well 
as accumulation of contaminants in sediments or biota, would be small 
for continued operations during a renewed license period at all plants 
as discussed in Section 4.5.1.1, ``Surface Water Resources, Discharge 
of Biocides, Sanitary Wastes, and Minor Chemical Spills,'' of the 
``Generic Environmental Impact Statement for License Renewal of Nuclear 
Plants,'' NUREG-1437, Volume 1, Revision 1, dated June 2013 (ADAMS 
Accession No. ML13106A241).
    The proposed EPU would not increase the volume or rate of water 
that is drawn from Conowingo Pond, and water withdrawals and 
consumptive use would continue to be regulated by the Susquehanna River 
Basin Commission with no changes to the current withdrawal 
authorizations. PBAPS's cooling water intake structure (described 
previously under ``Plant Site and Environs'') is designed to reduce 
impingement and entrainment of aquatic organisms, and the proposed EPU 
would not require any modifications to the current cooling system 
design. Thus, NRC staff concludes that compared to current operations, 
the proposed EPU would not change the impingement or entrainment rate 
of fish, shellfish, or other aquatic organisms.
    Chemical effluents discharged from PBAPS would not change in type 
or quantity under EPU conditions, and effluent discharges to Conowingo 
Pond will continue to be regulated by PADEP under the site's NPDES 
permit. Thus, NRC staff concludes that compared to current operations, 
the proposed EPU would not change the type or concentration of chemical 
effluents that could impact aquatic resources.
    The proposed EPU would increase the temperature of discharged 
water. Under current operating conditions, cooling water passing 
through the condensers can increase by as much as 22[deg]F. Under the 
proposed EPU conditions, Exelon estimates that cooling water 
temperatures would increase by approximately 3[deg]F, which would 
result in an increase of up to 25[deg]F as water passes through the 
condensers. The NPDES permit for PBAPS limits the instantaneous maximum 
effluent temperature in the discharge canal (Outfall 001) to 110[deg]F. 
Heated effluent water released into the discharge canal travels 4,700 
ft south to a spillway, at which point it enters Conowingo Pond. A 
thermal study at PBAPS, conducted from June through October of 1999 
under zero cooling tower operation conditions, reported the daily 
average water temperatures at the discharge canal outfall ranged from 
66.7[emsp14][deg]F to 106.5[emsp14][deg]F.
    Prior to the current NPDES permit (effective January 1, 2011), 
helper cooling towers at PBAPS were used only during extreme low flow 
and high temperature conditions in Conowingo Pond. The current NPDES 
permit requires PBAPS to operate one to three of its cooling towers 
from June 15 to September 15 as part of the permit's thermal and 
biological study. Exelon began the required sampling in 2010 and 
continued the sampling through 2013. The study will, among other 
things, evaluate the changes in the thermal plume during helper cooling 
tower operation and create a model of these changes that takes into 
account proposed EPU conditions and other environmental influences to 
Conowingo Pond.
    In NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 4.1.4, ``Heat Shock,'' the 
NRC staff concluded that for the continued operation of Units 2 and 3, 
the impacts from thermal effluents would be small. However, this 
conclusion was made assuming station conditions under the previous 
NPDES permit. As discussed on page 4 of Attachment 1 to the licensee's 
letter dated February 17, 2011 (ADAMS Accession No. ML110490533), which 
transmitted the current NPDES permit and an evaluation of the 
modifications to the permit to the NRC, the previous permit did not 
require an instantaneous maximum effluent temperature action level. 
However, the current technical specifications in the NRC operating 
licenses for PBAPS, Units 2 and 3, require that plants be shut down 
when the instantaneous intake temperature exceeds 92[emsp14][deg]F. As 
discussed in Attachment 1 to the licensee's letter, in this 
circumstance, and based on the condenser maximum temperature rise of 
21.66[emsp14][deg]F, the discharge canal should not exceed a maximum of 
113.66[emsp14][deg]F. Thus, the current NPDES permit, which stipulates 
an instantaneous maximum effluent temperature action level of 
110[emsp14][deg]F, is inherently more protective of the environment. 
The previous NPDES permit did not require the operation of helper 
cooling towers. Use of helper cooling towers in the summer months has 
likely reduced this already small impact. Once completed, the thermal 
and biological studies will determine to what degree the helper cooling 
towers mitigate effluent temperatures and the character of the thermal 
plume. After the study is completed and based on the study results, 
Exelon will submit to PADEP an application to modify the NPDES permit. 
These modifications may include actions to manage the thermal discharge 
under EPU conditions. For any such future modifications, the PADEP 
must, in accordance with Section 316(a) of the Clean Water Act, ensure 
thermal effluent limitations assure the protection and propagation of a 
balanced, indigenous community of shellfish, fish, and wildlife in and 
on Conowingo Pond.
    In NUREG-1437, Supplement 10, Section 4.1.5, ``Microbiological 
Organisms (Public Health),'' the NRC staff concluded that the potential 
effects of microbiological organisms on human health from the operation 
of the plant's cooling water discharge to the aquatic environment on or 
in the vicinity of the site are small. As discussed in NUREG-1437, 
Supplement 10, Section 4.1.5, discharge temperatures from Units 2 and 3 
do not exceed 110[emsp14][deg]F in late summer. This is below the 
temperatures known to be conducive to growth and survival of 
thermophilic pathogens. The ongoing disinfection of the sewage effluent 
from PBAPS reduces the likelihood that a seed source or inoculants 
would be introduced to the station's heated discharge or to Conowingo 
Pond. As previously discussed, the current NPDES permit will continue 
to assure that there will not be any significant impacts on human 
health from microbiological organisms.
    The current NPDES permit includes thermal limitations and operating 
conditions that are more protective than the previous NPDES permit 
(considered in Section 4.1.4. ``Heat Shock,'' of NUREG-1437, Supplement 
10). The PADEP will continue to regulate and enforce PBAPS thermal 
discharges in a manner that will assure the protection and propagation 
of a balanced, indigenous community of shellfish, fish, and wildlife in 
and on Conowingo Pond. Therefore, the increase in thermal effluent 
under proposed EPU conditions would not result in a significant impact 
to aquatic resources.

Terrestrial Resource Impacts

    During EPU-related upgrades and plant modifications, impacts that 
could potentially affect terrestrial resources could come from noise, 
lighting, and other disturbances to wildlife. However, noise and 
lighting would not impact terrestrial species beyond what would be 
experienced during normal operations. This is because EPU-related 
upgrades and plant modifications would take place during normally 
planned

[[Page 18077]]

outage periods, which are already periods of heightened activity. 
Habitat loss or fragmentation would not occur, because the proposed EPU 
would not involve any new construction outside of the existing facility 
footprint (discussed previously under ``Land Use and Aesthetic 
Impacts'') and would not require transmission system upgrades or 
modifications. No changes in transmission line maintenance and 
vegetation removal are anticipated. The EPU will increase electric 
current flowing through the transmission system. This will increase the 
strength of the electromagnetic field around the transmission lines. 
However, as discussed on pages 4-21 and 4-24 of Supplement 10 NUREG-
1437, the NRC has determined that a scientific consensus has not been 
reached on the chronic effects of the electromagnetic field on humans, 
and that significant impacts to the terrestrial biota have not been 
identified. Sediment transport and erosion is not a concern because 
EPU-related activities would only take place on previously developed 
land. Therefore, the proposed EPU is not expected to cause a 
significant impact on terrestrial resources.

Threatened and Endangered Species Impacts

    Under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended 
(ESA), Federal agencies, in consultation with the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service (FWS) or the National Marine Fisheries Service (as 
appropriate), must ensure that actions the agency authorizes, funds, or 
carries out are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any 
listed species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of 
critical habitat.
    The NRC staff has identified two federally listed species that 
occur in York County, Pennsylvania: the bog turtle (Glyptemys 
muhlenbergii) and the Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis), which are discussed 
below. The NRC staff also considered the possibility of the shortnose 
(Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) 
sturgeons to occur above Conowingo Dam in Conowingo Pond because, 
historically, sturgeon likely inhabited the Susquehanna River upstream 
of the location of the Conowingo Dam prior to its construction. 
Currently, sturgeons are known to occur in the lower Susquehanna River 
and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources has noted the 
occurrence of sturgeon at Conowingo Dam. However, given the size of the 
dam and the fact that shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon typically do not 
use fish lifts that were designed for other species (Conowingo Dam's 
fish lift was designed for the passage of American shad (Alosa 
sapidissima)), the NRC reasonably concludes that neither the shortnose 
nor Atlantic sturgeon occur in Conowingo Pond.
    The FWS listed the northern population of the bog turtle as 
threatened under the ESA in 1997 (62 FR 59605). The FWS has not 
designated critical habitat for this species. Bog turtles inhabit early 
to mid-successional wetlands fed by groundwater or associated with the 
headwaters of streams and dominated by emergent vegetation. 
Pennsylvania counties identified by the FWS as containing extant bog 
turtle populations occur in the southeastern part of the state, and 
many occur within the Delaware River and Susquehanna River watersheds. 
In 2000, Exelon commissioned bog turtle habitat (Phase 1) surveys in 
the vicinity of PBAPS, but no areas of suitable habitat were identified 
during the surveys. The potential for adverse effects at the PBAPS site 
and along transmission line corridors to bog turtles was evaluated in 
Section 2.2.6, ``Terrestrial Resources,'' of NUREG-1437, Supplement 10. 
The NRC staff concluded in Section 4.6.2, ``Terrestrial Species,'' that 
continued operations during the license renewal term would have no 
effect on bog turtles due to the lack of suitable habitat. The NRC 
staff requested the FWS's concurrence with this determination in a 
letter, dated January 17, 2002 (ADAMS Accession No. ML020180445). The 
FWS concurred with this determination in a letter, dated April 17, 2002 
(ADAMS Accession No. ML021510200). The PBAPS site continues to lack 
suitable habitat for bog turtles, and the proposed EPU would not 
involve any habitat loss or fragmentation or any other significant 
impacts to the terrestrial environment. Therefore, the proposed EPU 
would have no effect on the bog turtle.
    The FWS listed the Indiana bat as endangered wherever found in 1967 
under the ESA's predecessor, the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 
1966 (32 FR 4001). The FWS has not designated critical habitat for the 
species in Pennsylvania (41 FR 41914). Areas of the PBAPS site that 
could serve as potential Indiana bat habitat include forested areas, 
forest edges, and riparian areas. The Pennsylvania Game Commission 
(PGC) reports that Indiana bats use habitat within York County during 
the summer. However, no hibernation or maternity sites occur in the 
county. The Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement did not 
consider the effects of continued operation of PBAPS during the license 
renewal term on Indiana bats. The proposed EPU would not disturb or 
alter any natural habitats on the PBAPS site or along any transmission 
line corridors, and other impacts such as noise and lighting during 
EPU-related upgrades. Furthermore, plant modifications would not result 
in a significant impact on the terrestrial environment. Therefore, the 
proposed EPU would have no effect on the Indiana bat.
    The NRC did not identify any designated critical habitat that could 
be affected by the proposed EPU, nor has the FWS proposed the listing 
or designation of any new species or critical habitat that could be 
affected by the proposed EPU. Therefore, the proposed EPU would have no 
effect on designated critical habitat, proposed species, or proposed 
critical habitat.

Essential Fish Habitat

    Section 305(b) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act includes requirements for Federal agencies to consider 
the impact of Federal actions on essential fish habitat (EFH) and to 
consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) if any 
activities may adversely affect EFH. According to the EFH Mapper and 
the NMFS's ``Guide to Essential Fish Habitat Designations in the 
Northeastern United States,'' NMFS has not designated any EFH under the 
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act within the 
affected water bodies. Thus, the proposed EPU would have no effect on 
designated essential fish habitat.

Species Protected by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

    Within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the PGC, the Pennsylvania 
Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC), and the Pennsylvania Department of 
Conservation and Natural Resources (PDCNR) oversee the protection of 
Commonwealth-listed species under the Pennsylvania Endangered Species 
Program. The PGC, PFBC, and PDCNR manage the recovery efforts for wild 
birds and mammals (34 Pa. Code 133); fish, amphibians, reptiles, and 
aquatic organisms (30 Pa. Code 75); and native plants (17 Pa. Code 45), 
respectively.
    As part of preparing its EPU application, Exelon performed a 
Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Inventory (PNDI) Environmental Review 
through the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program's Web site. The 
survey results indicated no known impacts to species of concern within 
the oversight

[[Page 18078]]

of the PGC and FWS. No further review by these two agencies was 
required. Exelon also directly contacted some of the Pennsylvania 
agencies listed above to determine potential impacts to Commonwealth-
listed species that could result from the proposed EPU. Exelon's PNDI 
Environmental Review indicated that there would be no impact to species 
under the PDCNR's jurisdiction and that no further project review from 
this agency was required. The PNDI Environmental Review indicated three 
terrestrial plant species under the PDCNR's purview could occur in the 
vicinity of PBAPS: the lobed spleenwort (Asplenia pinnatifidum), the 
harbinger-of-spring (Erigenia bulbosa), and the American holly (Ilex 
opaca). The PNDI Environmental Review also included recommended 
conservation measures from the PDCNR, which included practices that 
could avoid the introduction of invasive species. Exelon contacted the 
PDCNR directly via a letter dated January 23, 2012, requesting that the 
PDCNR confirm Exelon's conclusion that the proposed EPU would not 
adversely affect any Commonwealth-listed threatened or endangered 
species. In their response, dated February 21, 2012, the PDCNR 
indicated that the proposed EPU would not result in impacts to species 
under its jurisdiction. For species under the PFBC's purview, the PNDI 
Environmental Review indicated that further review was required to 
determine potential impacts. Exelon contacted the PFBC in a letter, 
dated January 23, 2012. Subsequently, the PFBC indicated in a letter, 
dated February 24, 2012, that no adverse impacts are expected to 
species under its jurisdiction from the proposed EPU. Each of the 
letters referenced in this paragraph are included in Exelon's 
supplemental environmental report, which was submitted as Attachment 8 
to the EPU application.
    The NRC staff reviewed the information discussed above in Exelon's 
EPU application concerning Commonwealth-listed species. The appropriate 
Pennsylvania agencies have confirmed the proposed EPU would not affect 
any species under their purview and NRC staff has not identified any 
impacts to the terrestrial or aquatic environment beyond those 
previously considered by each Pennsylvania agency in their reviews. 
Therefore, the proposed EPU would have no significant impacts to 
Commonwealth-listed species.

Socioeconomics

    Currently, approximately 900 permanent workers and 200 contract 
workers are employed at PBAPS. Exelon's EPU-related plant modifications 
would occur during the regularly scheduled refueling outages. During 
normal refueling outages, approximately 800 temporary workers are added 
to the normal workforce of 1,100 permanent and contract workers. The 
first phase of EPU modifications is planned to be implemented during 
the 2014 outage. During that outage, approximately 1,300 additional 
temporary workers will be added to the normal outage workforce, with 
the total workforce at PBAPS peaking at approximately 3,200 workers 
over the modification period. Once EPU-related plant modifications have 
been completed, the size of workforce at PBAPS would return to normal 
levels. The PBAPS workforce will remain similar to pre-EPU levels, as 
will the temporary workforce needed for future refueling outages. The 
size of the workforce will be unaffected by implementation of the 
proposed EPU.
    The NRC expects most outage and EPU plant modification workers to 
relocate temporarily to communities in Lancaster or York County, 
resulting in short-term increases in the local population along with 
increased demands for public services and housing. As modification work 
would be temporary, most workers would likely stay in rental homes, 
apartments, mobile homes, and camper-trailers. The 2011 American 
Community Survey 1-year estimate for vacant housing units reported 
11,509 units in Lancaster County and 12,192 units in York County that 
could potentially ease the demand for local rental housing. Therefore, 
while a short duration temporary increase in plant employment would 
occur, this increase would have little or no noticeable effect on the 
availability of housing in the region.
    The additional number of workers, truck material, and equipment 
deliveries needed to support EPU-related plant modifications would 
likely cause short-term level of service impacts (restricted traffic 
flow and higher incident rates) on secondary roads in the immediate 
vicinity of PBAPS. Increased traffic volumes would be necessary to 
support implementation of EPU-related modifications during the 
refueling outage. As EPU-related plant modifications would occur during 
a normal refueling outage, there could be noticeable short-term (during 
certain hours of the day), level-of-service traffic impacts beyond what 
is experienced during normal outages. During periods of high traffic 
volume (i.e., morning and afternoon shift changes), work schedules 
could be staggered and employees and/or local police officials could be 
used to direct traffic entering and leaving PBAPS to minimize level-of-
service impacts.
    PBAPS currently pays property taxes and payments in lieu of 
property taxes to York County, Peach Bottom Township, and the South 
Eastern School District. The amount of future property taxes and 
payments in lieu of property taxes paid by PBAPS could be affected by 
the increased value of PBAPS as a result of the EPU and increased power 
generation. Due to the short duration of EPU-related plant modification 
activities, there would be little or no noticeable effect on local tax 
revenues generated by temporary workers residing in Lancaster and York 
counties.
    Therefore, based on the information presented above, no significant 
socioeconomic impacts are expected from EPU-related plant modifications 
and operations under EPU conditions in the vicinity of PBAPS.

Environmental Justice Impacts

    An environmental justice impact analysis evaluates the potential 
for disproportionately high and adverse human health and environmental 
effects on minority and low-income populations that could result from 
activities associated with the proposed EPU at PBAPS. Such effects may 
include biological, cultural, economic, or social impacts. Minority and 
low-income populations are subsets of the general public residing in 
the vicinity of PBAPS, and all are exposed to the same health and 
environmental effects generated from activities at PBPAS.
    The NRC considered the demographic composition of the area within a 
50-mile radius of PBAPS to determine whether minority populations may 
be affected by the proposed action. The NRC examined the distribution 
of minority populations within 50 miles of PBAPS using the U.S. Census 
Bureau data for 2010.
    According to the 2010 Census data, approximately 5 million people 
live within a 50-mile radius of PBPAS. Minority populations within 50 
miles compose 35.6 percent (approximately 1.8 million persons) of the 
total population. The largest minority group was Black or African-
American (approximately, 1.2 million persons or 23.1 percent), followed 
by Hispanic or Latino (of any race) (approximately 315,000 persons or 
6.3 percent). According to 2011 American Community Survey 1-Year 
Estimates,

[[Page 18079]]

minority populations within Lancaster County comprise 10.2 percent of 
the total population with the largest minority group being Hispanic or 
Latino (of any race) at 8.9 percent. Minority populations within York 
County comprise 12.2 percent of the total population with the largest 
minority group being Black or African-American at 6 percent.
    According to 2011 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates census 
data for Lancaster and York counties, approximately 10.9 percent of the 
population residing within Lancaster County and 11.0 percent of the 
population residing in York County were determined to be living below 
the 2011 federal poverty threshold. In addition, approximately 7.9 
percent of families residing within Lancaster County and 8.2 percent of 
the families in York County were determined to be living below the 
Federal poverty threshold. The 2011 Federal poverty threshold was 
$22,350 for a family of four and $10,890 for an individual. The median 
household income for Lancaster County was approximately $64,566 and for 
York County was approximately $66,053. Lancaster County median 
household income is 28.5 percent higher than the median household 
income (approximately $50,228) for Pennsylvania, while York County is 
31 percent higher.
    Potential impacts to minority and low-income populations would 
mostly consist of human health, environmental, and socioeconomic 
effects (e.g., noise, dust, traffic, employment, and housing impacts). 
Radiation doses from plant operations after the EPU are expected to 
continue to remain well below regulatory limits.
    Noise and dust impacts would be temporary and limited to onsite 
activities. Minority and low-income populations residing along site 
access roads could experience increased commuter vehicle traffic during 
outage shift changes. Increased demand for inexpensive rental housing 
during the EPU-related plant modifications could disproportionately 
affect low-income populations; however, due to the availability of 
housing, impacts would be of short duration (approximately 30 to 40 
days) and limited. Furthermore, according to the 2011 American 
Community Survey 1-year estimate, there were 11,509 vacant housing 
units in Lancaster County and 12,192 vacant housing units in York 
County available to help alleviate any short-term increased demand.
    Based on this information and the analysis of human health and 
environmental impacts presented in this environmental assessment, the 
proposed EPU would not have disproportionately high and adverse human 
health and environmental effects on minority and low-income populations 
residing in the PBAPS vicinity.

Historic and Cultural Resources Impacts

    There are no records of historic and cultural resources being found 
on PBAPS property. However, there is the potential to find historic and 
cultural resources at the PBAPS site as the majority of recorded 
archaeological sites in the region are found within the first terraces 
above the Susquehanna River. The likelihood of these resources being 
present at PBAPS has diminished as the terraces near PBAPS were flooded 
by the formation of Conowingo Pond. Nevertheless, there are nine 
historic properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places 
within 6 miles of PBAPS.
    As previously discussed, all EPU-related plant modifications would 
take place within existing buildings and facilities at PBAPS, including 
the replacement of two electrical transformers on the existing pads. 
Since no ground disturbance or construction-related activities would 
occur outside of previously disturbed areas and existing electrical 
transmission facilities, there would be no significant impact from EPU-
related plant modifications on historic and archaeological resources, 
should they be found on or in the vicinity of PBAPS.

Non-Radiological Cumulative Impacts

    The NRC staff considered potential cumulative impacts on the 
environment resulting from the incremental impact of the proposed EPU 
when added to other past, present, and reasonably foreseeable future 
actions in the vicinity of PBAPS. For the purposes of this analysis, 
past actions are related to the construction and licensing of PBAPS, 
present actions are related to current operations, and future actions 
are those that are reasonably foreseeable through the end of station 
operations including operations under the EPU.
    There will not be significant cumulative impacts to the resource 
areas of air quality, groundwater, threatened and endangered species, 
or historic and cultural resources in the vicinity of PBAPS, because 
the contributory effect of ongoing actions within a region are 
regulated and monitored through a permitting process under State or 
Federal authority (e.g. NPDES and 401/404 permits under the Clean Water 
Act). In these cases, impacts are managed as long as these actions are 
in compliance with their respective permits and conditions of 
certification.
    Surface water and aquatic resources were examined for potential 
cumulative impacts. The geographic boundary for potential cumulative 
impacts is the area of the post-EPU thermal mixing zone in Conowingo 
Pond. If the proposed EPU is approved and is implemented, PBAPS is 
predicted to have a slightly larger and hotter mixing zone than pre-
uprate conditions during full flow and capacity. The NRC staff 
anticipates that PBAPS will continue to operate post-EPU in full 
compliance with the requirements of the PADEP. The PADEP would evaluate 
PBAPS compliance with its individual wastewater facility permit.
    Land use, and aesthetics impacts from the EPU are not expected to 
contribute to cumulative impacts as there will be no construction of 
new transmission facilities on site, transmission maintenance and 
vegetation practices will not change, and all plant modifications will 
be implemented within existing buildings
    As discussed in the aquatic biology section, the abundance of 
aquatic organisms as a source of food for terrestrial organisms should 
not change. During the construction of the EPU, only minor temporary 
changes in air emissions from additional workers and construction 
equipment are expected. No changes to air emission from implementation 
of the EPU are expected. There will not be any increases to surface 
water or air that would increase the impact to terrestrial biota as a 
result of the EPU. Therefore, the NRC staff concludes that impacts to 
terrestrial biota are not expected to contribute to cumulative impacts 
to terrestrial resources as a result of the proposed action.
    The greatest socioeconomic impacts from the proposed EPU and 
continued operation of PBAPS would occur during the 2014 outage. The 
increase in EPU-related construction workforces would have a temporary 
effect on socioeconomic conditions in local communities from the 
increased demand for temporary housing, public services (e.g., public 
schools), and increased traffic, but would not contribute to cumulative 
impacts. No significant cumulative impacts are expected as a result of 
the proposed EPU.

Non-Radiological Impacts Summary

    As previously discussed, the proposed EPU would not result in any 
significant non-radiological impacts. Table 1 summarizes the non-

[[Page 18080]]

radiological environmental impacts of the proposed EPU at PBAPS.

       Table 1--Summary of Non-Radiological Environmental Impacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                     The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on land
      Land use and aesthetic            use conditions and aesthetic
                                                  resources
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Non-Radioactive Waste.............  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact from the
                                     generation of nonradioactive waste.
Air Quality.......................  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on air
                                     quality.
Water Use.........................  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on water
                                     use.
Water Quality.....................  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on water
                                     quality.
Aquatic Resources.................  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on
                                     aquatic resources.
Terrestrial Resources.............  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause a significant impact on
                                     terrestrial resources.
Threatened and Endangered Species.  The proposed EPU would have no
                                     effect on any species or habitats
                                     protected under the Endangered
                                     Species Act or on designated
                                     essential fish habitat protected
                                     under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery
                                     Conservation and Management Act.
                                     Additionally, the proposed EPU
                                     would have no significant impacts
                                     on any Pennsylvania-listed species.
Socioeconomics....................  No significant socioeconomic impacts
                                     are expected as a result of the
                                     proposed EPU.
Environmental Justice.............  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause any disproportionately high
                                     and adverse human health and
                                     environmental effects on minority
                                     and low-income populations residing
                                     in the PBAPS vicinity.
Historic and Cultural Resources...  The proposed EPU is not expected to
                                     cause any significant impact to
                                     historic and cultural resources.
Non-Radiological Cumulative.......  No significant non-radiological
                                     cumulative impacts are expected as
                                     a result of the proposed EPU.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Radiological Impacts

Radioactive Gaseous, Liquid Effluents and Solid Waste

    Units 2 and 3 use waste treatment systems to collect, process, 
recycle, and dispose of gaseous, liquid, and solid wastes that contain 
radioactive material in a safe and controlled manner within NRC and 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) radiation safety standards. The 
licensee's evaluation of plant operation at the proposed EPU conditions 
shows that no physical changes would be needed to the radioactive 
gaseous, liquid, or solid waste systems.

Radioactive Gaseous Effluents

    The gaseous waste management system manages radioactive gases 
generated during the nuclear fission process. Radioactive gaseous 
wastes are composed of activation gases and radioactive noble gases 
from the reactor coolant system, gases from the charcoal treatment 
system, and gases collected during venting of plant piping. The 
licensee's evaluation determined that implementation of the proposed 
EPU would not significantly increase the volume of gases processed in 
the gaseous waste management system, since plant system functions are 
not changing and the volume of gases from the plant systems are not 
expected to change. The analysis also showed the proposed increase in 
power level would increase the total amount of radioactivity in the 
gaseous waste management system. However, the licensee's evaluation 
concluded that the increased radioactivity would not require any 
changes to the gaseous waste management system. The system would 
continue to safely control and process the waste in accordance with 
plant procedures to maintain radioactive gaseous releases within the 
dose limits of 10 CFR 20.1301 and the as low as is reasonably 
achievable (ALARA) dose objectives in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 and 
EPA's 40 CFR part 190.

Radioactive Liquid Effluents

    The liquid waste management system collects, processes, and 
prepares radioactive liquid waste for disposal. Radioactive liquid 
wastes include liquids from plant systems containing reactor coolant 
and liquids that became contaminated from contact with plant systems 
containing radioactive liquids. The licensee's evaluation shows that 
the proposed EPU would not significantly increase the inventory of 
liquid normally processed by the liquid waste management system. This 
is because the system functions are not changing and the volume inputs 
remain approximately the same. The licensee's evaluation showed the 
proposed EPU would increase the total amount of radioactivity in the 
liquid waste management system. However, since the composition of the 
radioactive material in the waste and the volume of radioactive 
material processed through the system are not expected to significantly 
change, the licensee's evaluation concluded that no changes are needed 
to the system's design or operation. The existing equipment and plant 
procedures will continue to control radioactive liquid releases to the 
environment within the NRC's dose limits in 10 CFR 20.1301 and ALARA 
dose standards in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 and EPA's 40 CFR part 
190.

Public Radiation Doses at EPU Conditions

    The primary sources of offsite dose to members of the public from 
Units 2 and 3 are radioactive gaseous and liquid effluents. As 
discussed in the radioactive gaseous and liquid effluent sections 
above, operation at the proposed EPU conditions will not change the 
radioactive gaseous and liquid waste management systems' abilities to 
perform its intended functions to safely control and process the waste. 
There would be no change to the radiation monitoring system and 
procedures used to control the release of radioactive effluents in 
accordance with NRC radiation protection standards for the public in 10 
CFR 20.1301 and Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 and EPA's 40 CFR part 190.
    The licensee evaluated the projected dose to members of the public 
from radioactive effluents at the proposed EPU by using actual dose 
data reported for the period from 2005 through 2008 and recalculated 
the dose based on the proposed EPU. The following bullets summarize the 
projected maximum dose to a member of the public located outside the 
PBAPS site boundary from radioactive gaseous and liquid effluents from 
the proposed EPU:
     The maximum whole body dose to an offsite member of the 
public from the combined radioactive liquid effluents from Units 2 and 
3 is 1.52 x 10-\2\ millirem (mrem)/year, which is well below 
the 6 mrem/year dose criterion in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 for two 
reactor units.

[[Page 18081]]

     The maximum organ dose to an offsite member of the public 
from the combined radioactive liquid effluents from Units 2 and 3 is 
1.98 x 10-\2\ mrem/year, which is well below the 20 mrem/
year dose criterion in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 for two reactor 
units.
     The maximum air dose at the site boundary from gamma 
radiation from the combined gaseous effluents from Units 2 and 3 is 
7.27 x 10-\1\ millirad (mrad)/year, which is well below the 
20 mrad/year dose criterion in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 for two 
reactor units.
     The maximum air dose at the site boundary from beta 
radiation in the combined gaseous effluents from Units 2 and 3 is 1.42 
x 10-\1\ mrad/year, which is well below the 40 mrad/year 
dose criterion in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 for two reactor units.
     The maximum organ (thyroid) dose to an offsite member of 
the public from radioactive iodine and radioactive material in 
particulate form from Units 2 and 3 is 5.12 mrem/year, which is well 
below the 30 mrem/year dose criterion in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 
for two reactor units.
     Based on the projected annual EPU doses from radioactive 
gaseous and liquid effluents from Units 2 and 3 being well within the 
dose criteria in Appendix I to 10 CFR part 50 and the projected 
negligible direct shine dose contribution from components within the 
facilities, including the independent spent fuel storage installation, 
the total dose will be well within the 40 CFR 190 annual whole body 
dose standard of 25 mrem/year.
    Based on the above, the projected radiation doses to members of the 
public from the proposed EPU are expected to be within Federal 
regulatory limits and therefore, would not be significant.

Occupational Radiation Doses at EPU Conditions

    The licensee's evaluation determined that the radioactivity levels 
in plant systems are expected to increase with the proposed EPU. 
Permanent shielding to reduce radiation levels is used throughout the 
two reactor units to protect workers. The licensee's evaluation of the 
current shielding design determined that it is adequate to continue to 
protect the workers from the projected increased radiation levels. In 
addition to the permanent shielding, the licensee's radiation 
protection program, through the use of training, protective clothing 
and equipment, temporary shielding, monitoring radiation levels, and 
direct oversight by radiation protection personnel at individual job 
sites, will ensure that radiation exposures to workers will be ALARA, 
as required by 10 CFR 20.1101. Based on the above information, the NRC 
staff concludes that the proposed EPU is not expected to significantly 
affect radiation levels within the plant and would not be a significant 
radiological impact to the workers.

Radioactive Solid Wastes

    Radioactive solid wastes include solids recovered from the reactor 
coolant systems, solids that come into contact with the radioactive 
liquids or gases, and solids used in the reactor coolant process 
system. The licensee evaluated the potential effects of the proposed 
EPU on the solid waste management system. The results of the evaluation 
indicate that the proposed EPU will increase the volume and activity of 
radioactive solid waste by approximately 14 percent. The largest volume 
of radioactive solid waste generated at Units 2 and 3 is low-level 
radioactive waste which includes used resins, filters, dry compressible 
waste, irradiated components, and waste oil and ash.
    As stated by the licensee, the proposed EPU would not have a 
significant effect on the radioactive solid waste system. The proposed 
EPU would not generate a new type of waste or create a new waste 
stream. No changes are needed to the system to accommodate the 
projected additional volume and activity. The equipment used to process 
the solid waste is designed and operated to ensure that hazards to the 
workers and the environment are minimized. Waste processing areas are 
monitored for radiation as part of the radiation protection program to 
ensure that radiation exposure to workers is maintained within NRC dose 
limits in 10 CFR 20.1201.
    Based on the above, the licensee is expected to continue to safely 
control and process radioactive solid waste from the proposed EPU in 
accordance with NRC requirements. Therefore, the impacts from solid 
waste would not be significant.

Spent Nuclear Fuel

    Spent fuel from Units 2 and 3 is stored in the plant's spent fuel 
pool and in dry casks in the independent spent fuel storage 
installation (ISFSI). Spent fuel generated after implementation of the 
proposed EPU will also be stored in the spent fuel pool and the ISFSI. 
Units 2 and 3 are licensed to use uranium-dioxide fuel up to a maximum 
enrichment of 5 percent by weight uranium-235. The typical average 
enrichment is approximately 4.2 percent by weight of uranium-235. The 
average fuel assembly discharge burnup for the proposed EPU is expected 
to be approximately 51,000 megawatt days per metric ton uranium (MWd/
MTU) with no fuel pins exceeding the maximum fuel rod burnup limit of 
62,000 MWd/MTU. The licensee will maintain these fuel characteristics 
during the proposed EPU. There will be no change to the fuel design or 
the current 24-month refueling cycle. The fuel characteristics for 
enrichment and burnup presented above, will ensure that environmental 
impacts associated with the spent fuel will remain within the impact 
values contained in: (1) 10 CFR 51.51, Table S-3, ``Table of Uranium 
Fuel Cycle Environmental Data''; (2) 10 CFR 51.52, Table S-4, 
``Environmental Impact of Transportation of Fuel and Waste to and from 
One Light-Water-Cooled Nuclear Power Reactor''; as supplemented by (3) 
NUREG-1437, Volume 1, Addendum 1, ``Generic Environmental Impact 
Statement for License Renewal of Nuclear Plants, Main Report, Section 
6.3--Transportation, Table 9.1, Summary of findings on NEPA [National 
Environmental Policy Act] issues for license renewal of nuclear power 
plants'' (ADAMS Accession No. ML040690720).
    Therefore, there would be no significant impacts resulting from 
spent nuclear fuel.

Design-Basis Accidents

    Design-basis accidents (DBAs) are evaluated by both the licensee 
and the NRC staff to ensure that Units 2 and 3 can withstand a spectrum 
of postulated accidents without undue hazard to the health and safety 
of the public.
    Separate from the NRC staff's environmental assessment in this 
document, the NRC staff is evaluating the licensee's DBA analyses of 
the potential radiological consequences that may result from the 
proposed EPU. The results of the NRC staff's evaluation and conclusion 
will be documented in a Safety Evaluation (SE) that will be made 
publically available. If the NRC staff concludes in the SE that the 
radiological consequences of DBAs at the proposed EPU power levels are 
within NRC requirements, then the proposed EPU will not have a 
significant impact with respect to the radiological consequences of 
DBAs.

Radiological Cumulative Impacts

    The radiological dose limits for protection of the public and plant 
workers have been developed by the NRC and EPA to address the 
cumulative impact of acute and long-term exposure

[[Page 18082]]

to radiation and radioactive material. These dose limits are codified 
in 10 CFR part 20 and 40 CFR part 190.
    The cumulative radiation doses are required to be within the limits 
set forth in the regulations cited previously. The public dose limit of 
25 mrem/year in 40 CFR part 190 applies to all reactors that may be on 
a site and also includes any other nearby nuclear facilities. 
Currently, there are no other operating nuclear power reactors located 
near Units 2 and 3. As discussed in the public radiation dose section, 
the NRC staff reviewed the licensee's projected post-EPU radiation dose 
data and concluded that the projected dose to members of the public 
would be well within the limits of 10 CFR part 20 and 40 CFR part 190. 
The NRC staff expects continued compliance with NRC's and EPA's public 
dose limits during operation at the proposed EPU power level. 
Therefore, the NRC staff concludes that there would not be a 
significant cumulative radiological impact to members of the public 
from radioactive effluents from Units 2 and 3 at the proposed EPU 
operating conditions.
    As previously discussed, the licensee has a radiation protection 
program that maintains worker doses within the dose limits in 10 CFR 
20.1201. The NRC staff expects continued compliance with the agency's 
occupational dose limits during operation at the proposed EPU power 
level.

Radiological Impacts Summary

    Based on the radiological evaluations discussed previously, with 
the exception of the impacts associated with DBAs which the NRC staff 
is evaluating separately from this EA, the proposed EPU would not 
result in any significant radiological impacts. If the NRC staff 
concludes in its SE that the DBAs associated with the proposed EPU meet 
NRC requirements, then the environmental impacts will not be 
significant. Table 2 summarizes the radiological environmental impacts 
of the proposed EPU at PBAPS.

         Table 2--Summary of Radiological Environmental Impacts
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Radioactive Gaseous Effluents.....  Radioactive gaseous effluents are
                                     expected to be adequately handled
                                     by the existing radwaste system.
Radioactive Liquid Effluents......  Radioactive liquid effluents are
                                     expected to be adequately handled
                                     by the existing radwaste system.
Public Radiation Doses at EPU       Radiation doses to members of the
 Conditions.                         public from radioactive effluents
                                     are expected to remain below NRC
                                     (10 CFR 20.1301 and Appendix I) and
                                     EPA radiation protection standards
                                     (40 CFR part 190).
Occupational Radiation Doses at     Radiation doses to workers are
 EPU Conditions.                     expected to remain within NRC dose
                                     limits (10 CFR 20.1201).
Radioactive Solid Wastes..........  Radioactive solid waste is expected
                                     to be adequately handled by the
                                     existing radwaste system.
Spent Nuclear Fuel................  The spent fuel characteristics will
                                     remain within the bounding criteria
                                     used in the impact analysis in 10
                                     CFR part 51, Table S-3.
Design-Basis Accidents............  If the NRC staff concludes in the SE
                                     that the radiological consequences
                                     of DBAs at the proposed EPU power
                                     levels are within NRC requirements,
                                     then DBAs will not have a
                                     significant radiological
                                     consequence.
Radiological Cumulative Impacts...  Radiation doses to the public and
                                     plant workers would remain below
                                     NRC (10 CFR part 20) and EPA (40
                                     CFR part 190) radiation protection
                                     standards.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Environmental Impacts of the Alternatives to the Proposed Action

    As an alternative to the proposed action, the NRC staff considered 
denial of the proposed EPU (i.e., the ``no-action'' alternative) for 
PBAPS, Units 2 and 3. Denial of the application would result in no 
change in the current environmental impacts. However, if the EPU were 
not approved, other agencies and electric power organizations might be 
required to pursue other means of providing electric generation 
capacity, such as fossil fuel or alternative fuel power generation, to 
offset future demand. Construction and operation of such a fossil-
fueled or alternative-fueled plant may create impacts in air quality, 
land use, and waste management significantly greater than those 
identified for the proposed EPU.

Alternative Use of Resources

    This action does not involve the use of any different resources 
(water, air, land, nuclear fuel) not previously considered in NUREG-
1437, Supplement 10.

Agencies and Persons Consulted

    In accordance with its stated policy, on September 6, 2013, the 
staff consulted with the Pennsylvania State official, Mr. Brad Fuller 
of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, regarding 
the environmental impact of the proposed action. The State official had 
no comments.

III. Finding of No Significant Impact

    The NRC is proposing to amend Renewed Facility Operating License 
Nos. DPR-44 and DPR-56 for PBAPS, Units 2 and 3. The proposed 
amendments would authorize an increase in the maximum reactor power 
level from 3514 MWt to 3951 MWt.
    The NRC has determined not to prepare an Environmental Impact 
Statement for the proposed action. The proposed action will not have a 
significant effect on the quality of the human environment because, 
amending the licenses with the higher maximum reactor power level, will 
not result in any significant radiological or non-radiological impacts. 
Accordingly, the NRC has determined that a Finding of No Significant 
Impact (FONSI) is appropriate. The NRC's Environmental Assessment (EA), 
included in Section II above, is incorporated by reference into this 
finding.
    The NRC's FONSI and the related environmental documents listed 
below are available for public inspection and may be inspected online 
through the NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS) at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. You may also 
inspect these documents at the NRC's Public Document Room as described 
previously.
    The NRC's FONSI and the associated EA are available in ADAMS at 
Accession No. ML14042A397. Related environmental documents supporting 
the NRC's FONSI are as follows: (1) Attachment 8, ``Supplemental 
Environmental Report,'' to Exelon's EPU amendment request dated 
September 28, 2012 (ADAMS Accession No. ML12286A011); (2) NUREG-1437, 
Volume 1, Addendum 1, ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement for 
License Renewal of Nuclear Plants, Main Report, Section 6.3--
Transportation, Table 9.1, Summary of findings on NEPA issues for 
license renewal of nuclear power plants,'' dated August 1999 (ADAMS 
Accession No. ML040690720); (3) Supplement 10 to NUREG-1437, ``Generic 
Environmental Impact Statement for the License

[[Page 18083]]

Renewal of Nuclear Power Plants, Regarding Peach Bottom Atomic Power 
Station, Units 2 and 3,'' dated January 2003 (ADAMS Accession No. 
ML030270059); and (4) ``Generic Environmental Impact Statement for 
License Renewal of Nuclear Plants,'' NUREG-1437, Volume 1, Revision 1, 
dated June 2013 (ADAMS Accession No. ML13106A241).

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 24th day of March 2014.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Meena K. Khanna,
Chief, Plant Licensing Branch I-2, Division of Operating Reactor 
Licensing, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 2014-07132 Filed 3-28-14; 8:45 am]
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